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Fire officials: Man sets house on fire, flees scene, crashes into tree in Maryland

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Fire officials: Man sets house on fire, flees scene, crashes into tree in Maryland. (Hollywood Volunteer Fire Department/Rick Brady)

HOLLYWOOD, Md. (WJLA) - A man is behind bars after fire officials say he set a house on fire in Hollywood Wednesday evening.

According to Fire Chief Rick Brady of the Hollywood Volunteer Fire Department, fire crews found a two-story, single-family home on fire in the 26000 block of Penninsular Drive at around 4:35 p.m.

When firefighters attempted to enter the home, they encountered several rounds of live ammunition that prevented them from entering.

Witnesses told fire crews on the scene that the suspect, later identified as Nicholas Everett Nowotny, was breaking every window of the house and then lit it on fire.

Brady said Nowotny then got into his car and fled the scene. He later crashed into a tree.

After an investigation, authorities determined Nowotny, the son of the home's owner, Michael Nowotny, intentionally set fire to the home.

He has since been charged with arson in the first degree.

Nowotny is being held without bond at the St. Mary's County Detention Center until his hearing Tuesday at 1 p.m.

This story was updated on May 14, 2018, at 9:03 p.m.

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